Sun, 25 Feb 2018 10:51:52 +0000
By CHINTU MALAMBO
THE Constitutional Court has reserved ruling in a case in which it had asked former Director of Public Prosecution (DPP) Mutembo Nchito to explain whether his petition, challenging his dismissal as DPP was properly before court.
Earlier, the court raised a preliminary issue as to whether reliefs sought by Mr Nchito were properly before the Constitutional Court.
When the matter came up for hearing of the question raised by the court, Solicitor-General, Abraham Mwamba on behalf of the State said the matter was not properly before court.
Mr Mwamba said some of the reliefs sought in Mr Nchito’s petition could not be by way of petition but judicial review.
“To answer this court’s question, we are inclined to submit that the court has no jurisdiction to entertain the reliefs sought by Mr Nchito. We do not agree that the reliefs sought can be addressed in a petition.
“The appropriate way is judicial review proceedings ought to be instituted in this court in order to address the reliefs in issue,” Mr Mwamba submitted.
But Mr Nchito said the issue raised fundamental questions as the Constitutional Court was a trial court and reliefs sought should not be shot down before the matter is heard.
He said the court should not worry about the reliefs sought because it was the quality of evidence that will determine whether the reliefs were properly before court.
“The court can only stick out reliefs at the end of the matter that is if it finds that the evidence does not satisfy the remedies,” Mr Nchito said.
This is in a matter in which Mr Nchito petitioned his expulsion alleging that there had never been an investigation against him before the Judicial Complains Commission pursuant to Article 144 of the Constitution.
The court served ruling on a date to be communicated.